cf. S. Jones, "Touch of Wood," Art Review, March 2003, p. 120 for an example of the 'Slice' chair in plywood.
Mathias Bengtsson experiments with industrial material and process in combination with handcraftsmanship to produce technically innovative and striking pieces. He is best known for his 'Slice' series in which each piece of furniture is constructed from an arrangement of stacked, flat, different shaped sheets of various materials; the first iteration was created in plywood, the second, aluminum and the third, foam. Visually arresting in each material, the plywood version has been likened to a topographical map of a desert canyon while the aluminum pieces clearly speak to a striking machine age aesthetic with a futuristic touch. In the 'Slice' armchair the various parts - arms, back and base -all organically merge to a completely unified sculptural whole although clearly assembled from a vast number of individual two-dimensional parts.
Born in Copenhagen in 1971, Mathias Bengtsson studied furniture at the Danish College of Design, graduating in 1997. He continued his studies at the Royal College of Arts in London, directed by Ron Arad, and earned his degree in 1999. Subsequently Bengtsson and a few colleagues created the design studio 'At Third Stroke,' and a year later, with Sam Buxton, he co-founded 'Design Laboratory.' In 2002 Bengtsson established his own studio in London.
Bengtsson's intriguing designs have received much acclaim. In 2002 his work was included in the exhibition 'Aluminum by Design' at the Design Museum, London and a year latter the British Council featured his furniture in the 'Great Brits' exhibition held in Milan during the Furniture Fair. In 2005 the Rhösska Museum in Gothenberg, Sweden presented a one-man show of his work.
Versions of the 'Slice' chair are included in the permanent collections of The Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston and the Manchester Art Galleries, England.